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Ten Tulsans Earn First Women of the Year – Pinnacle Awards

Matt Trotter

YWCA Tulsa and the Mayor’s Commission on the Status of Women recognized 10 women Tuesday for making a difference in the community.

The Women of the Year – Pinnacle Award represents a merger of those two groups. Mayor Dewey Bartlett presented the awards and said the winners work to eliminate racism, empower women and uphold the legacy of the previously independent Pinnacle Award.

"The legacy of the Pinnacle Awards is reflected in women who are role models in their professions, who take risks on behalf of others, perform community service, and advocate for women's issues and concerns," Bartlett said.

Among the honorees was Allison Leigh Moore, a founding member of the Surayya Anne Foundation. The foundation offers a transitional living program geared toward Muslim women. Moore said staff members also speak Arabic, Farsi and several other languages to help women in crisis.

"If they come into a main shelter here in town, sometimes they call us because we have the individuals on staff that can assist them with their language and their cultural needs as well," Moore said.

Tulsa Community College Senior Student Affairs Officer Jan Clayton was another winner. Clayton called education "the great equalizer."

"Education in particular is a difference maker for women," Clayton said. "It gives women the opportunity to be more competitive in terms of pay opportunities. At a community college, it really opens the door to diversity of students."

The rest of the winners are educator Shirley Ann Ballard Nero, former state Sen. Judy Eason McIntyre, OSU Medical Center Foundation Director Janice Edmiston, Tulsa World Executive Editor Susan Ellerbach, Domestic Violence Intervention Services Executive Director Tracey Lyall, Tulsa Community Foundation Program Officer Suzanne Schreiber, Tulsa School of Arts and Sciences English teacher Ellen Stackable and Women Empowering Nations founder Carlisha Williams.

Bama Companies CEO Paula Marshall was recognized with the Anna C. Roth Legacy Award, given to women who work to bring about social change for women and marginalized populations.

Matt Trotter joined KWGS as a reporter in 2013. Before coming to Public Radio Tulsa, he was the investigative producer at KJRH. His freelance work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times and on MSNBC and CNN.